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Thursday, 05 February 2015


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That was a beautiful moon this morning. I'm a bit farther north of you, and farther east (Montreal), and I spotted it at about 7:15 this morning EST, which is about 40 minutes earlier than your shot. Although the sky was a lot brighter over here, the moon was strikingly golden, like a harvest moon. I grabbed a quick shot with my Olympus EM5 but I haven't taken it out of the camera yet. I don't expect much -- it was just a snapshot of record -- but I'm hoping to see similar highlight detail.

Love abounds on TOP of late. Congratulations on both the animate and inanimate sides.

The X-T1 seems to fit me like a glove as well. I'm typically pleasantly surprised at the amount of nice detail hiding or held in the shadows and highlights. In my prior years with Canon, I was always hesitant to open up the shadows for fear of the grit that lurked beneath, but no longer.

Nice Work, Mike. Thanks for sharing.

I had a nice moon shot this morn with my X-T1. Too bad I'd taken the memory card out. I'll never understand engineers who build a digital camera that lets you shoot without any way to capture the image.

Yep, the Fujis rock at dynamic range. That fact the X-T1 is 14-bit helps there, too.

The top three attributes I love about the Fuji X-cams are their dynamic range (ability to hold detail in shadow and highlights), their noise performance at high ISO, and their very beautiful color.

The lenses ain't bad, either. ;-)

I just returned my X-T1. I loved the viewfinder, which is the best I've seen, but the buttons were just terrible. I prefer the X-E2, which doesn't have the awesome viewfinder but does share the same great sensor, and the handling is better, IMO. Not to mention that the X-T1 has really pushed the price of X-E2s down quite a lot; they're a real bargain.

No.2 photo hits the spot for me.

I love that alternate, Mike. It is a lovely piece of darkness.

Send some of that snow to us. We could use it here in North Central North Dakota. Winter wheat crop has suffered due to no snow to cover and protect it. Ground has no insulating layer which normally helps protect wells and pipes.

Very striking photos. Unfortunately we are devoid of this kind of beauty in Southern California.

I am sure XT-1 is a fine camera, but I think that most modern sensors can pull that kind of highlight details (not counting canon at the moment). Is your personal experience otherwise?

Eight degrees below zero! Yikes. I wouldn't think such places to be humanly habitable. How does the Fuji do at 8 below?


The second shot of the field is a keeper. The Fuji is impressive but I am surprised you describe it as the first digital camera to give you this highlight detail, wouldn't you get this or even better with your D800?


Love the alternate.

But I was always the alternate on sports teams so maybe I've got a soft spot for 'em.

I wrote earlier that I had taken a shot of the same moon, about 40 minutes earlier and 700 miles farther east, with my Olympus OMD EM5 (and Oly 45/f1.8). Below is a mashup to show you the detail. I had underexposed by a stop or two, probably too much, because I ended up brightening the exposure in Lightroom and then bringing down the highlights a bit.

Just a photo of record, nothing to get excited about. But good moon detail!

[That's a better moon lens than my 23mm. --Mike]

Regards writing: Just so ya know, it's also true of science (and surely every other field of human endeavor) that there's no one way to do it right. As a teacher, that reality is a horror: no one route to enlightenment fits all!

On a more prosaic note, it would be great to get your take on IQ in the OM-D and Fuji worlds.

My vote is for your alternate take of the field out back. Less postcard, so much more Zen. Very nice.

Eight below zero

Centigrade I assume.

[No, Fahrenheit. In Centigrade it was –22°. --Mike]

Mike, have you finally found camera love as well?

OMG! Maybe I should finish my first cup of coffee before I read your posts. Until today I completely rushed past your funny "Game of Thrones" reference headline. Well done.

Crop rotation also provides for various soil nutrients, particularly replenishing the nitrogen levels. Odd how much of that soil science I recall from my Ohio farmboy days...

@Wolfeye Just like film! ;)

@Jack Crop rotation is also about soil nutrition, perhaps more than pest control. Corn is especially hard on soil. Other crops, such as beans, restore the chemical balance.

During growing season I prefer soybeans for the view and the great sunsets. Corn season builds a wall around the house and completely blocks the view (I face the farm fields on all fours sides of my house). Soybean harvest is the worse of the two harvest times. Be sure all your windows and doors are closed tightly when the combine shows up to harvest the beans. The dust created is horrible. You will want to pressure wash the siding and any masonry on the outside of your house plus wash all the windows three times over.

I always wanted to live out in the country and finally moved here after I retired. Like they say, "be careful of what you wish for".

Dear Zee and Aaron,

Going out on a limb here, because I haven't actually tested the Fuji, but…

What I think Mike meant about getting better highlight detail is not about the total exposure range, but about how many stops of that are apportioned to the highlights. The very short, non-technical explanation** is that within the total exposure range of the camera, the manufacturer has considerable leeway where they set the exposure midpoint. Some put it smack dab in the middle, some favor giving more of the exposure range to the highlights and some to the shadows. One of the things Mike and I both liked about the Olympus OMD series is that the two additional stops of exposure range it has over the previous generation go into the highlight range. Makes it much, much harder to block the highlights, which is the very worst thing you can do.

I'm guessing that the Fuji has a particularly nice curve shape in that respect, by Mike's tastes.

(( ** For those who want the fully detailed and accurate technical explanation, read the following two columns:


http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2012/10/raw-is-not-raw.html ))

pax \ Ctein
[ Please excuse any word-salad. MacSpeech in training! ]
-- Ctein's Online Gallery http://ctein.com
-- Digital Restorations http://photo-repair.com

Number 2 for me. Do you feel the fuji colors can add something that no one else offers up as easily?
I loaned my XE1 and "crappy" kit 16-50 to a friend doing the northern lights tour in Norway. All I showed her, after the basics was the exposure comp dial. The photos were stunning! Bright, clean and rich even at iso 6400.

I am so happy you're going to do an informal series of this field and have a relationship with it along the way. You're so right about it's impending demise and a standard suburban tract going in its place. Had a similar experience with a field behind my apartment complex when in college. Did not shoot then as much as I do know but wish I did. It was a personal thrill to go out and walk in the winter stillness when the field was fallow, then to watch as seedlings grow in spring, and then become so full of lush green in summer, and then be harvested in the fall. Each time the atmosphere and environment feeling new as I too was changing and growing myself (yes, that was a very cheesy analogy but heck it was accurate!). Was nice to have reflective time there. Enjoy and keep sharing please.

Just curious, how do you hang your print on the wall ? Some temporary holder ? A proper frame ?

Hi Mike,
A lovely shot.

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